David Bowden - Enchanting Borneo, Published by John Beaufoy Publishing
Nature Escapes

David Bowden Enchanting Borneo: Temptation to Discover Biological Wonders and Eco-Adventure



David Bowden Enchanting Borneo

Enchanting Borneo
by David Bowden

Published by John Beaufoy Publishing
UK, 2011


As the world's third largest island, Borneo is a massive landscape with some of the best wildlife viewing opportunities in Malaysia.

Exploring the interior of Borneo requires some planning, but don't be dismayed because you can still visit the rainforests, beaches, mountains and longhouse communities with relative ease.

Come for the natural experiences to marvel at the range of biodiversity and leave with new insights into the cultural traditions of indigenous people and the modern ways of an exotic land.

What can you see and do in Borneo?

  • Enter the depths of one the world's largest caves in Sarawak's Mulu National Park.
  • Go wildlife-watching along the Kinabatangan River and at Danum Valley in Sabah.
  • See a diversity of mammals like the Proboscis Monkey, the Bornean Pygmy Elephant and the Orang-Utan.

If that's not enough. How about climbing the peak of Mount Kinabalu? Or diving in Sipadan and Semporna to watch sea turtles and colorful marine life?

Nature is fantastic in Borneo, but the diversity of people from Sea Dayaks to Highland communities to the Iban are even more amazing to discover.

Enchanting Borneo - Book Notes

  • 80 pages of stimulating photos and facts about Sabah, Sarawak, Brunei and Kalimantan.
  • Enticing selection of photographs with extended captions for easy reading
  • A perfect companion for travellers interested in going on a holiday to the island.


Nature Escapes Q&A Session - David Bowden

david bowden

Not only is David a different breed of cat (pun intended), he always manages to find the right mix of leech infested jungle treks with a day's end drink by the poolside on any adventure.

Q: Why should tourists travel to Malaysian Borneo?

It's very different from Peninsula Malaysia. It's assets are its natural attractions and dozens of ethnic communities and cultural groups. And the flora and fauna is very different from what people are used to in their home countries.

Q: What are 3 natural experiences not to miss in Sabah or Sarawak?

  • Mt. Kinabalu -- You don't have to climb to the summit to appreciate it. You can see many endemic plants at all altitudes, even around the park HQ.
  • Mulu Caves -- The sheer scale and size of the caves are very impressive and well worth a visit.
  • Orangutans -- These primates with great appeal can be seen either on a jungle or river cruise and up close at a rehabilitation centre.

Q: What are the unique plants or animals found in Borneo?

Orangutans, hornbills, and proboscis monkey are just some of the unique animals besides the bird life and unique plants like orchids, pitcher plants and Rafflesia. It really is a hotspot for biodiversity.

The wildlife is accessible at places like Sepilok in Sabah or Matang in Sarawak or the Kinabantagan, one of the most visited tourists spots, for proboscis monkeys.

If you want to get off the beaten track in Borneo, go to the Danum rainforest, Tabin, or Maliau. You can be in parts of the rainforest that very few people ever visit.

Another place is Turtle Island Park which restricts visitors to only 30 people per night. Getting around Borneo to more remote sites still has a sense of pioneering adventure.



Q: Where is one your favorite Nature Escapes in Borneo?

The Lower Kinabatangan has special interest because you can get close to wildlife and it's still a place where only a handful of people go every day. Though for a somewhat remote location you can still get a cold bear and reasonable accomodation.

A second place is Turtle Island due to my early work with WWF with nature intrepretation.

Q: What kind of nature activities are suitable for kids in Borneo?

There are places in Borneo where you can break up the day for kids' activities. These include walking through the canopy in a rainforest, walking a mangrove boardwalk, exploring a cave, swimming at a resort and seeing the orangutans at Sepilok.

Take the kids on a river trip, mountain biking, or crawling through caves, even Mulu has a swimming pool.

Q: What is Borneo really like?

For those who don't know, it is a wild, isolated rainforest covered island for those who want that experience. But you could be sitting at a comfortable resort watching hornbills fly past while sipping a martini too.

I suggest you do the wild and wooly adventure and then reward your efforts in leisure on a resort style holiday in luxurious surroundings.

enchanting borneo


Contact the Author

Other titles in this series by the author include -- Enchanting Malaysia and Enchanting Singapore (Available in mid-2012)

For More Details:

  • David Bowden
  • +60 19 224-3302
  • davidbowden.travelwrite[at]gmail.com

In Malaysia purchase the book at any MPH Book Shop.
Outside Malaysia use Amazon.com.


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